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The National Pact
is an unwritten agreement that laid the foundation of Lebanon
Lebanon , officially the Republic of LebanonRepublic of Lebanon is the most common term used by Lebanese government agencies. The term Lebanese Republic, a literal translation of the official Arabic and French names that is not used in today's world. Arabic is the most common language spoken among...
as a multi-confessional
Confessionalism is a system of government that refers to de jure mix of religion and politics. It can mean distributing political and institutional power proportionally among religious communities.-Debate:...
state, and has shaped the country to this day. Following negotiations between the Shi'ite, Sunni, and Maronite leaderships, the National Pact was born in the summer of 1943 allowing Lebanon to be independent. Among the following key points of the agreement are for:
| the Maronites
Maronites , is an ethnoreligious group in the Middle East that have been historically tied with Lebanon. They derive their name from the Syriac saint Mar Maron whose followers moved to Mount Lebanon from northern Syria establishing the Maronite Church....
not to seek foreign intervention and accept Lebanon as an Arab affiliated country, instead of a Western one
| the Muslims to abandon their aspirations to unite with Syria
Syria , officially the Syrian Arab Republic , is a country in Western Asia, bordering Lebanon and the Mediterranean Sea to the West, Turkey to the north, Iraq to the east, Jordan to the south, and Israel to the southwest....
| the President of the Republic always to be Maronite
| the Prime Minister of the Republic always to be Sunni
| the President of the National Assembly always to be Shi'a
| the Deputy Speaker of the Parliament and the Deputy Prime Minister
A deputy prime minister or vice prime minister is, in some counties, a government minister who can take the position of acting prime minister when the prime minister is temporarily absent. The position is often likened to that of a vice president, but is significantly different, though both...
always to be Greek Orthodox
| the Chief of the General Staff always to be Druze
The Druze are an esoteric, monotheistic religious community, found primarily in Syria, Lebanon, Israel, and Jordan, which emerged during the 11th century from Ismailism. The Druze have an eclectic set of beliefs that incorporate several elements from Abrahamic religions, Gnosticism, Neoplatonism...
| Parliament members to be in a ratio of 6:5 in favour of Christians to Muslims (Binder 1966:276)
A Christian majority in the 1932 census, widely considered to be manipulated in their favour, was the underpinning of a government structure that gave the Christians control of the presidency, command of the armed forces, and a Parliamentary majority. However, following a wider trend, the generally poorer Muslim population has increased faster than the richer Christians. Additionally, the Christians were emigrating in large numbers, further eroding their only marginal population edge, and it soon became clear that Christians wielded a disproportionate amount of power. As years passed without a new census, dissatisfaction with the government structure and sectarian rifts increased, eventually sparking the Lebanese civil war
The Lebanese Civil War was a multifaceted civil war in Lebanon. The war lasted from 1975 to 1990 and resulted in an estimated 150,000 to 230,000 civilian fatalities. Another one million people were wounded, and today approximately 350,000 people remain displaced. There was also a mass exodus of...
(Randal 1983: 50).
The Taif Agreement
The Taif Agreement was an agreement reached to provide "the basis for the ending of the civil war and the return to political normalcy in Lebanon." Negotiated in Taif, Saudi Arabia, it was designed to end the decades-long Lebanese civil war, politically accommodate the demographic...
of 1989 changed the ratio of Parliament to 50:50 and reduced the power of the Maronite president.